Hawks nation is angry. (Most of) the hockey world is angry. Today on the 670 the Score, the common theme of the callers was "revenge." What Raffi Torres did is inexcusable...especially for a guy with such a record of dirty play and outright disregard for his opponents or their well being. He's a bad guy, and I have (some) faith that Brendan Shanahan will bring down the hammer on this punk.
The Blackhawks would be wise to leave revenge to the powers that be. Not only is violence, physicality, and goonery not their game, but they can't afford to get in to an "eye for an eye" situation. If Brandon Bollig runs Shane Doan, maybe Keith Yandle runs Patrick Kane. If Brent Seabrook runs Keith Yandle, then maybe Paul Bissonnette runs Jonathan Toews. Then what? Where does that leave your franchise? No one knows the severity of Marian Hossa's injury. The news, so far, seems to be better than expected. Who knows how many big hits Jonathan Toews can absorb before he needs to consider calling it quits?
The risk / reward of retaliation is simply not worth it.
The best way to punish the Phoenix Coyotes is to send them to the golf course...not the hospital. The Hawks, with or without Hossa, are a good enough team to win the series. Yes, it looks bleak now, but I doubt the Coyotes can waltz into the United Center and take away two wins. Thursday night, I expect a better response from the men in the Indian Head.
Many fans were saying "Win it for Hossa!" last night. Well, this isn't Hollywood. Unless you've been through it, you can't imagine the emotions that run through your head when you see a teammate seriously injured. I had the misfortune of watching my best friend's football career disappear in an instant when he dislocated his knee in a football game vs De La Salle. Like that...a Division 1 recruit would never play again.
With some time to heal mentally and physically, and the opportunity to play with a full lineup, the Hawks should win Thursday. If they don't, it's going to be mighty difficult to come back. Nearly as difficult as it would be to see Torres skate in the next round. Hopefully, Hawks fans don't have to face either of those nightmare scenarios.